AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) —– Every MLK Day the NBA celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 22 out of 30 teams are playing on this national holiday. High school and college basketball teams also look forward to playing every year. However, this day is not only about fun and games, but it’s a day to honor his legacy.
Peace, motivation, and freedom are keywords to describe Dr. King’s journey for people to be treated equally.
“His impact on the world is the same, but we still have a long way to go as a country to get the energy he preached,” said Ike Brown.
MLK Day is a day when people across the nation reflect on Dr. King’s legacy. Every year basketball teams play to honor him. His alma mater, Morehouse College, came to Augusta to take on Paine College.
“I hope they take away the fact they are playing for a prideful man, and that we need to make sure that we are living the dream every day,” explained Brown.
Fans at the HEAL Complex say without his desire for change, America could never move forward.
“Our university is kind of diverse; we have a few different races,” said Jacqueline Williams. “If it weren’t for him, that wouldn’t be possible.”
They also say the impact he left is still the same 52 years later.
“I don’t think it is a loss for these students because they are part of institutions that honor Dr. King in some very significant ways,” explained Dr. Luther Felder.
Paine’s Campus pastor says it shouldn’t take MLK Day to treat others as to how we want to be treated.
“Where is the transformational non-conformist that Dr. King talked about, who will make a difference in this society,” said Dr. Felder. “Someone to contribute to helping the poor get their right met.”
Even though the dreamer is gone, people say his dream is still alive.
“Even though we have a lot of work to do in this country, a lot of stuff can get better,” said Williams. “But the dream is still alive.”
Paine beat Morehouse 66 – 61.
The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday represents the second-largest day of NBA tv broadcasting on the schedule. It’s right behind Christmas Day.